What is Seaweed?
Seaweed is a marine plants, also called alga, which can be found in lakes, rivers, and other water bodies. Seaweed includes different types of algae .i.e. green algae, red algae or brown macroalgae. Some of the seaweeds are edible while some are not. They also provide good opportunities for industries and are the source of many compounds like proteins, phenols, etc.
Seaweed are a simple, non-flowering, and typically aquatic plant of a large group that includes the seaweeds and many single-celled forms. Seaweed/algae contain chlorophyll but lack true stems, roots, leaves, and vascular tissue.
The word weed means misnomer of marine plants. Some seaweeds are used in pharmaceutical industry, cosmetic production, and in food products. They are also used as seaweed garnish and seaweed seasoning for salads, soups, and rice. For rice, there is a ready made rice seasoning that you can try, called furikake. Seaweed is mostly used in the Asian countries like Japan, China, and Korea.
Seaweed has been classified into three types which are as follows:-
- Red Seaweed: These algae or seaweed are also known as Rhodophyta which has more than 6,000 species. Irish moss or Sea Moss, dulse or coralline algae are the best examples of red algae. They are red in color because of the presence of pigment phycoerythrin.
- Brown Seaweed: It is the popular type of seaweed which is found in arctic or temperate waters. Rockweed, Sargassum, kelps are some examples of brown algae. Also known by its scientific name called Phaeophyta.
- Green Seaweed: It is also known by the name of Chlorophyta which as 4,000 species. It is found in the freshwater or marine habitats. It has three forms of multicellular, colonial and unicellular.
Seaweed Species Names
There are different types of seaweed are available which are used for different purposes. Following are some types of seaweed which are as mentioned below:-
- Fucus spiralis
- Ulva compressa
- Dead man’s fingers
- Coralline officinalis
- Japanese wireweed
- Scytosiphon lomentaria
- Fucus serratus
Seaweed Nutrition Facts
Seaweed like wakame is low in saturated fat and low cholesterol. It is also a good source of vitamin A, B, C, D, E, and K.
Seaweed holds its own nutritive value. Seaweed is used for many benefits as it has a high nutritive value which is described as follows:-
- Different type of seaweed offers levels of protein which totally depends upon their types. It is the richest source of vitamin A, B, C, D, and E.
- Some seaweed contains vitamin K which helps in the clotting of blood.
- It has also many minerals like potassium, calcium copper and iron.
- It also contains iodine which helps in improving thyroid function of your body. It is a good source of fiber because every seaweed type has a different amount of fiber.
- Some seaweeds contain omega -3 which has long chain EPA and short chain linolenic acid. Even some species have DHA, which is present in shellfish and other fishes.
- Some seaweed contains antioxidants like an array of phytochemicals like polyphenols and fucoxanthin.
Find out more about seaweed nutrition here…
As we know, seaweed is the richest source of iodine and many other nutritive minerals. So in this way, some seaweed is edible and some are not. Seaweeds have some which we can eat as they have the highest nutritive value. Some of the edible seaweed is marine algae or freshwater algae. Out of these algae, some are toxic and some are non-toxic. Edible seaweeds are eaten as sea veggies, and for the production of food additives. Following are some of the species or the names of edible seaweed which one can eat are as mentioned below:-
The most common edible seaweed species used is Kelp. It belongs to the group of brown algae. it grows in the temperature of about 7-14 degrees Celsius and has high nutrient values. Kelps have also divided into 3 species which are as Wakame, Arame, and Kombu. Kelp has the following benefits:-
- It helps in improving your bone mineral density and heals your broken bones very quickly.
- There are present antioxidants like vitamin C in the kelp which helps in preventing cancer. It also helps in preventing breast cancer in Asian women.
- It contains 16 types of amino acids which help in building protein content. So it also helps in regulating cellular growth and muscle development of the body.
- It also helps in protecting your thyroid health and maintains the pH balance of the body which helps in digestion.
It is also known by the scientific name Palmaria palmata. People also used them as sea lettuce, red dulse, flakes, etc. it belongs to the group of red algae and found them on the coasts of the Atlantic and Northern oceans. Following are its benefits:-
- It helps in strengthening your nervous system because of the presence of omega-3 fatty acids in dulse.
- It also benefits you in improving your digestive system. Problems like diarrhea and constipation can also be controlled by using it.
- It also helps in the prevention of chronic diseases because of the presence of the minerals and vitamins in dulse.
- Dulse contains vitamin A which takes care of your eye health.
This seaweed comes in dried form and you have to soak it whenever you want to use. It is the richest source of calcium, dietary fibers, and algin (a kind of dietary fiber found from an edible seaweed). It has the following benefits which are mentioned as below:-
- It levels up your energy because of the presence of iron in Hijiki.
- It gives you natural energy as it is good for vegetarians.
- It also helps you in giving sound sleep.
- It also helps in suppressing the chances of osteoporosis.
- Release your stress levels from the body and helps in relaxation.
It is also a very popular seaweed which Japanese people used in making Sushi. It has a sweet and meat flavor which tastes good with sushi. Nori carries following awesome benefits which are as given below:-
- Nori is loaded with vitamin B which is good for vegetarians.
- It also contains unsaturated fatty acids which help in preventing atherosclerosis.
- It also has amino acids which help you in building muscles.
- Nori is full of iodine which controls hypothyroidism and enlargement of the thyroid gland.
Another edible seaweed that people love eating called sea grapes. For more read the detailed post on sea grapes.
Seaweed is used for making food. By using seaweed, they are used for making different types of food. Seaweed food came in many forms like soups, salads, snacks. Following are some seaweed foods which are mentioned as given below:-
There are also available seaweed snacks which are delicious and healthy too. Following are some examples of seaweed snacks which are as follows:-
- Seaweed crisps
- Urban platter dried Kombu strips
- Roasted seaweed snack
- Crunchy Seaweed Chips
- Seaweed snacks roasted sesame
Seaweed is also used for making salads also. Salads are rich in minerals like potassium, iodine. Following are some examples of seaweed salads which is as follows:-
- SeaSnax, SeaVegi, Seaweed Salad Mix
- Seaweed Crisps, Pumpkin Sesame.
- Seaweed salad with Miso Dressing
Seaweed is also available in soups also. Here are some examples of seaweed soups.
- SEAWEED SOUP (English, Paperback)
- Maine Coast Sea Vegetables, Organic Laver, Wild Atlantic Nori
- Korean Seaweed soups
- Beef seaweed soup
- Chinese seaweed soup
- Seaweed and Tofu soup
If you like the most easiest way to try seaweed; you can buy seaweed candy from local supermarket or online. I was recently contacted by a seaweed candy producer from Vietnam. But Seaweed candy can be produced anywhere in the World.
Seaweed also offers many health benefits. They are used for different purposes as it can be used for skin, thyroid, hair, and for many benefits. Following are the benefits of seaweed:-
Seaweed for skin:
Seaweed also plays important in the nourishment of the skin. There are some products which are available online, you can buy them. Seaweed has the following benefits:-
- It is anti-inflammatory which helps in removing acne from the skin.
- It also reduces toxins from the skin and makes it brighter.
- It helps in adding moisture to your skin and makes it even softer than before.
- It makes you help in fighting cellulite.
Seaweed for hair:
Seaweed is also used for hair problems. It has the following hair benefits:-
- It may help you in boosting hair growth.
- Helps in recovering your dry hair and scalp, makes it beautiful.
- Treats baldness and reduces thinning of hair, makes it strong.
- Seaweed helps in adding shine to your hair.
Seaweed is also used in making soaps. It plays a vital role in making your skin soft. It has the following benefits:-
- It gives nourishment to your skin, gives you toned skin.
- It also helps in removing dead cells from the skin.
- Thes soaps are very gentle on the skin, does not make it dry.
Seaweed is also used for making shampoos. Seaweed shampoo has the following benefits:-
- The presence of nutrients in seaweed shampoo gives you strong and healthy hair.
- It also gives volume to thin hair.
- Smoothens your curly and frizzy hair and makes it normal.
- Moisturizes your dry and damaged hair.
Best Seaweed Supplement:
Seaweeds are also used for making supplements. Different types of seaweed are used for making different types of supplements. Many types of best seaweed supplements are made like red mineral algae, kelp supplements, brown seaweed supplement and many of these best supplements are used for many different reasons.
Seaweed for thyroid:
It is also used for treating thyroid problems. Many types of seaweed are rich in iodine which helps in treating thyroid disorders. It also helps you in fighting with the problems of hypothyroidism. Seaweed supplements regulate the levels of thyroid hormones and make you feel better.
Seaweed for iodine deficiency:
Seaweed or seaweed products are the richest sources of iodine. It has the following benefits:-
- Removes iodine deficiency from the body.
- Helps in treating goiter and hypothyroidism.
- Helps in reducing birth defects in babies.
Seaweed Side Effects
Seaweed has many benefits but overdosing of everything is bad. It creates many problems and side effects. Now we will talk about some of the side effects of seaweed which are as following:-
- Skin allergy: If you overdo the skin products they may cause skin problems like allergies, skin rashes, patches on the skin, etc. So always use the products very wisely.
- Issues of gastrointestinal: Seaweed supplements may cause gastrointestinal issues. For example, if you are taking weight loss supplements, it may cause problems like bloating, nausea and pain.
- Toxicity of iodine: As iodine plays important functioning of the thyroid gland. If the level of iodine increases in the body, it may produce toxins in the body which may cause thyroid cancer.
- Heavy metals contamination: Seaweed is grown underwater in the sea. So there are chances that it may pollute with heavy metals which can be dangerous.
Seaweed is also available in drawing form online. If you want to learn how to make seaweed drawing, there are two free sources I can recommend YouTube and Pinterest. People offer you step by step tutorial that helps in drawing seaweed pictures. Many types of seaweed drawing are available like seahorse tattoo, British seaweed, pulpo, coral reef, coral wall decors, nature printed seaweed and many more.
Seaweed cartoon is also made which includes colorful pictures, clip arts, and many images. Seaweed cartoons can be drawn in different shapes by using different colors. It can be floral, plants, animals, fishes and in many forms.
Seaweed is also used as fuels. Many fuels are made by using it. Biodiesel, ethanol, and butanol are made by using seaweed. Different processes are made in order to produce biofuels.
Fertilizers are also made by using different seaweeds. Fertilizers are manufactured which are used for different purposes which are as following:-
- Used in garden soil to grow flowers and other plants.
- Fertilizers are added to farms to grow the crop that yields produce.
What is Seaweed?
Seaweed has a lot to offer to us, it is also called superfood (super-food), seaweed types, species, edible seaweed, benefits, uses as snacks, soups, salads. We also talked about their benefits, skin, hair, soaps, and shampoos. Seaweed offers health benefits like thyroid function, iodine deficiencies, and best seaweed supplements. There were also some of the side effects of seaweed. Seaweed is also available in many forms like seaweed cartoons, drawings, fuels, and fertilisers.